At some point, the time may come when your parents must be placed in a care home. Here are some tips to help you deal with your parents when this occurs.
By: Sarah Howard
Your parents once took care of you. They watched over you as you did homework. They bandaged skinned knees and checked under the bed for monsters. Dinners were prepared, curfews were set and they made the effort to help you grow into a functioning adult. It is heart breaking to watch this once strong couple wither and grow weak. At some point the time may come when your parents must be placed in a care home. Here are some tips to help you deal with your parents when this occurs.
Remember Their Feelings
It’s easy for you to see that your parents need to be in a care home. You see the rotten food that takes over the fridge, the medications that are forgotten and the housework that is starting to overwhelm them. You can see that your mother is losing too much weight and your father is still limping from a fall six months ago. What you may be forgetting is that they don’t see that.
Your parents are proud people and when they look around they see their home. They see the memories of watching you and your siblings grow up. They see the love they have for each other. They certainly don’t want to see that they can’t care for themselves, and having a decision forced on them is incredibly difficult. Even if they agree with the choice and are cooperative about the move, they probably still aren’t happy about it.
Above all else, try to be respectful of your parents during this time. Remember that they are suffering along with you as this transition period begins. Try to be compassionate and patient, while also staying firm that the move must be made.
Keep it Positive
Try to keep the focus on the move positive. Take them to the care home for visits even before they actually move in. Getting your parents in to the home for brief visits and tours ahead of time can help them feel more comfortable about the situation.
Talk to the staff to find out when open visiting hours and when fun activities will be taking place. Taking them to the home during these times can help alleviate their concerns that the place might be boring and stuffy.
Check out the amenities with them. Most care homes are more than just a place for shelter and food. They also provide entertainment. Some even feature workout rooms and pools. Find out what the amenities are before choosing a home, and then take your parents to see these cool features for themselves.
Talk frequently about the benefits. When your mother forgets her pills, you can cheerfully say that remembering won’t be a burden soon because she’ll have nurses to help her do that. When there is nothing to eat because the food has spoiled you can point out to your father how awesome it’s going to be when they have fresh meals every day. Point out that they can now enjoy the benefits of the maid service they always wanted. They won’t have to wash dishes, vacuum the floors or bother with dusting because a full-time staff will take care of those chores.
Stay Focused on the Goals
Staying positive and sympathetic won’t be easy. You may get frustrated at times followed by periods of depression. Keep reminding yourself of the many benefits of moving your parents into a care home. You made this decision for solid and valid reasons. Remind yourself of those reasons and goals so that you can stay strong, positive and understanding as you help your parents through this difficult time.
About the Author:
Sarah writes for Homes With Care, who provide a unique and dedicated service that helps inform interested parties on the availability of assisted living facilities, retirement homes for sale and rent offering integrated close care, close care, extra care and independent living.
Photo: Jonathan Rothwell